Today, I want to tell you the story of a shy girl with olive eyes and a wide smile. Let’s call her Star.
Star was born on a hot summer dawn. Her father wasn’t very happy, as he wished she had been a boy instead. Star grew up, but something always bothered her. Even though she had become a beautiful young lady, she felt lost. She was a sad person who felt rejected and could only see the dark side of life.
Her father loved her in his own way; he gave her gifts, even when it wasn’t a special occasion. He was a good father, but he didn’t show much affection. Star grew up hearing him say: this girl is very silly, she can’t do anything, I don’t know what will become of this girl when she grows up. Star kept all of this in her little heart and felt like the worst of people.
As a teenager, boys approached her, but she didn’t want to commit to anyone and could only feel sorry for them. She imagined that she would never be happy nor make anyone happy.
One day, a handsome young man managed to break through that icy barrier around her heart. Star decided to give love a chance, even without knowing how. Once they were married, he worked hard to get Star to open herself up to a new life. For a long time, she had built a wall around herself, and now it was almost impossible for anyone to tear it down. That was that boy’s challenge; conquer the fortress built since childhood.
The years went by and the young man, with a lot of love and patience, managed to destroy that wall. Today, Star is an elegant lady with grown children, a beautiful family, but which still carries—in a smaller, but present, scale—that childhood feeling.
Parents, educators, and caregivers—watch your words
Little ones capture everything we do and what we say about them and to them. What happens in childhood marks forever and cannot be erased. Inappropriate words can hurt and destroy a life. You may think they don’t understand, but nothing goes unnoticed in front of a child. Everything is recorded, and many are unable to express what they are feeling, or ask for help.
Everything that is recorded can no longer be deleted, only reedited through new experiences over old experiences. Reediting is a possible but complicated process. Your child’s image of you can no longer be erased, it can only be rewritten.
Brilliant Parents, Fascinating Teachers, p. 23 [Free Translation]
Life is too short to let opportunities pass. If you have children or work with children, nurture their dreams wisely, value their achievements, and demonstrate your love, so they can be emotionally strong.
The instructions given in childhood will follow them all through life. Parents sow the seed which will spring up and bear fruit either for good or evil. They can fit their sons and daughters for happiness or for misery.
Child Guidance, p. 175
Star’s story is present in many homes. Children who grow up being belittled, discouraged, and loved only through empty words. They don’t (just) need kind words, they need to be truly loved. Many children live alone in a house full of people, waiting for someone to notice them.
There’s still time. Hug your kids, even if they’re bigger than you, tell them how much you love them. Listen to your children; they are crying out, but their fear and anguish muffle their voices. They scream in different ways, but no one understands their outbursts.
Parents and educators need to listen to what children have to say, even if they cannot express it in words. Encouraging them to dream and fly after their goals is a gesture of love. Don’t clip their wings to prevent them from flying high. Many children are shot down in mid-flight by criticism or even “jokes” that destroy and kill their dreams.
When Jesus was here on earth, He paid special attention to children. He looked into their little hearts and saw a purity never seen in any other human being. The Majesty of Heaven cared for them.
He took the little children in His arms and descended to the level of the little ones. His wide heart of love could understand their trials and needs, He took little children in His arms and descended to the level of the young. His large heart of love could comprehend their trials and necessities, and He enjoyed their happiness. His spirit, wearied with the bustle and confusion of the crowded city, tired of association with crafty and hypocritical men, found rest and peace in the society of innocent children.Child Guidance, p. 265
Parents and teachers, think about what kind of people you are forming. Remember, when you have any difficulties, bend your knees and open your heart in prayer and God will hear you.
The habit of talking to God changes the way we talk to people. – Unknown